EU members agree on single-use plastics negotiation position

Photo: EU
31.10.2018 − 

The trilogue negotiations between the EU Parliament and Council on the proposed Directive on single-use plastics will start as planned on 6 November. EU member state representatives agreed their position for the upcoming talks, the Council announced on Wednesday.

The member states support the EU Commission's proposal to ban single-use plates and cutlery, drinking straws and balloon holders made of plastic and plastic-stemmed cotton buds from 2021. In addition, they propose banning beverage cups made of expanded polystyrene (EPS). Plastic-lined paper plates may continue to be used until 2023, but their consumption is to be reduced during this period.

The proposed Directive also calls for clean-up costs related to certain single-use products such as fast food packaging to be borne by their producers. The Council wants to extend this obligation to companies importing these products or selling them in the EU.

Furthermore, the Council wants to enable member states to transpose the provisions on extended producer responsibility schemes and on reducing the consumption of specific products through agreements between the relevant authorities and the sectors concerned, "provided that the targets and objectives of the legislation are achieved".

In the upcoming trilogue talks mediated by the EU Commission, representatives from the European Parliament and Council must negotiate a Directive text that can be accepted by both EU bodies and can then be formally adopted. The stated aim is to complete this process before the end of this year.

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